clay soil in orange county: tomatoes

luv_figsMarch 26, 2011


i just moved into a new house in laguna niguel. i had palm trees and a lot of other shrubs in the yard removed, and am deciding whether its worth the expense to build a raised bed or not. the top soil is good, but after 1 foot i see gray clay. i'm interested in planting tomatoes, zuchinni, eggplant, fig trees, and a persimmon tree.

should i be concerned about the clay underneath? if i build a raised bed, i will only be giving it one extra foot of dirt, so does it matter?



Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
calistoga_al ca 15 usda 9

As long as your soil drains I wouldn't worry about the clay. If you are not sure about drainage, I would do a percolation test. Al

    Bookmark   March 27, 2011 at 9:48AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
hoovb zone 9 sunset 23

Most veggies have their roots in the top few inches of soil. Fig and persimmon are tough trees, perfect soil not required.

The advantage of a raised bed is more in the ease of reaching the veggies when you are in a hurry to harvest for dinner. Also messy veggie plants look a little better encased in a rectangle.

Clay soil is good soil. It retains moisture and is loaded with nutrients. The drawback is that it is very solid and does not allow oxygen to get to plant roots (plant roots need oxygen).

If you mulch at least every year with a thick layer of good compost, in a few years your soil will be superb. Mulch also prevents weeds. Earthworms will pull the compost down into the soil and aerate the soil. Happy plants without the labor of digging.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2011 at 6:06PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
ISO Bored/Retired Landscape Designer In Sacramento Area
Posting to ask if anyone in my area might know if there...
little green worms on roses
Larvae of what? They seem to be going for the buds...
Need Giant Whitefly Locations in SoCal (Researcher)
Hello I am an Entomology Ph.D. student in need of some...
Shrubs for zone 9b (Riverside)
What shrubs have these attributes: Evergreen Height:...
Has anyone tried gooseberries and currants?
I love fruiting plants so much but being in the Bay...
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™